'Never forget your roots': Sisters help hometown in need
SISTERS Amanda Malone and Linda Benz-Asamoah may not live in Warwick any more but when they saw their beloved hometown in trouble, they were driven to offer up their own water supply to help families and animals in strife.
The pair, who now live at the Gold Coast, were aware of the drought's toll through their parents but it was only when Mrs Malone returned home two months ago for a visit that she realised the full extent of the disaster.
"I couldn't believe how bad it was and how dry it was," Mrs Malone said.
"We live here [the Gold Coast] and it's green and luscious.
"It's terrible that there's parts of Australia where there's been rainfall but other communities are really suffering."
Growing up daughters of Sandy Creek dairy producers, farming was in both sisters' blood and they knew just how much the lack of rain would be hurting not only the farmers but their animals too.
"I grew up on a farm, I know how hard they work and how devastating it is when they can't give their animals what they need," she said.
"It's obviously heartbreaking.
"I think of all the young farmers out there with their families and it makes me sad."
Mrs Benz-Asamoah agreed their tie to the region was still strong, despite the distance.
"Even though we've had to move to the city, we're country people," she said.
"That never leaves us, you never forget your roots.
"I don't tell Dad when it rains down here because I know it will upset him.
"But we're lucky at least because he's semi-retired."
That's why, together the two decided to help out in the only way they could.
Owning an acreage, Mrs Malone has access to spring dams and proposed that if someone could make the trip to the Gold Coast with a truck and carting supplies, the water she has available was theirs to take.
"It's all I can do," she said.
"They don't need money, they need water and I have that.
"I don't have oodles and can't offer the whole town water but I hope I can reach out to one or two farmers who are otherwise buying water right now ."
Mrs Benz-Asamoah, who pushed her sister to make her idea a reality, hoped the cause would help unite country and city in this trying time.
"It's important for people in Warwick to understand that people in the city do care and they do want to support them," she said.
Posting the offer on Facebook, Mrs Malone also hopes she can recruit other Gold Coast residents who are willing to spare a drop or two for farmers.
"I started an event with people I knew who were in a similar situation with dams on their property and they all said 'that's a great idea, they could have our water as well'," she said.
"Everyone lives in their own bubble but I like spreading the word.
"I don't know how I can help any other way."
To get in contact with Mrs Malone, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org